The Rustle of Silence

by Onyeike Chidinma

This is part two. Read the suite from the beginning.

My Little Darklings

She hated them. Everything they stood for, everything they represented. They knew this, they felt it, still they laughed. It was dark, just as it had been for the past 15 years. She was just a child, her body so terribly used. Innocent, pure even. It didn’t matter, it never did to them. They took, but she never gave. Round bellied and skinny, they came in different forms. Family they said, her very own flesh and blood.


 The word was like a curse that never left the tip of her tongue. It reeked of unforgiveness, Filth and Hate. She had accepted her fate. Her place beside Lucifer. He alone understood her, he alone knew her. Years she had searched like a blind bat, craving for acceptance. Looking for a space that knew her struggles, a space that never judged. She never found it.

The very people that threw their heads away  on sight of the red that flowed down her 5 year old legs, suddenly had more than a few accusing  fingers pointed at her. They spat and cursed at her. Sigh.

 The big Man upstairs, they said he loved broken porcelain dolls like her. He loved to fix them. To make them whole. For someone who they said was never late, never absent. He sure did a great job watching her clothes ripped off more than thrice. Probably sipping on some mojito whilst she was roughly fondled with.

Well, Too bad for him. She didn’t want to be fixed. He had his chance, now it was gone. She had learnt to dine with her demons, to embrace her broken pieces. It felt comforting, peaceful even. Cutting up layers of her skin with those pieces. A gentle reminder of the darkness that had enveloped her being. A darkness she loved.

“Oga sally your money na ten thaasand!!!”

“Ah! ah! Babinto!  for wetin now, no be five thaasand?”

“You say wetin?!! Five thaasand say who die!? No be you wey talk say you want grasshopper, and monkey style? After I don break my back finish na 5 thaasand you wan drop?”

“Your blood too dey hot, ah ah! Oya take 7 thaasand, you no say you be my person eh”

“Babinto! Babinto!…I be customer ohhh!”

Oga sally.. Oga sally..hmmm hennnn. Me I no dey like this kind business oh!  I no dey like am at all at all. Next time I no go follow you come.

This was pretty much her life almost everyday. A 2:1  graduate of chemical engineering. People would scream Tufiaka! Never forgetting to spit, whenever they found out. She could have easily gotten a decent job, found Mr right and started throwing out babies. Yet she chose a life of immortality and Sin. If only they knew how comfortable drowning in a chaos of immortality felt.

But they didn’t understand. That gender had taken everything away from her. Everything except the nights she spent willingly in their beds. That freedom, that free will was all she had.The only emotional luxury she could afford. Even in this freedom, she still sat legs crossed in a cage. A prison of horror, a mind that would never forget. Especially how it all began.

That woman she was unfortunate to have as a mother had travelled, Again. She was never around, Never. Leaving her Alone with the perpetrator. A daughter should feel safe around her father. He should be her superman without a cape. Her own personal bodyguard.

But I suppose some of us were simply born to be unlucky bastards.

He was murmuring, complaining, pacing up and down in a very confused manner.

I wish I could blame it on the alcohol, but he wasn’t drunk. Was he high? I don’t know, I don’t know, I don’t care.  There was no justification for the abomination he committed with my frail body, none at all.

That night as I recall was unusually darker and dead silent, than other nights, as I slept beside him. Hands crossed over his chest. I felt protected. Nothing could harm me, because daddy dear would be here to the rescue.

Where’s this ant coming from? This ant that’s walking with confidence on my chest. The room windows were shut too. So why was my little nightie going up. I felt him move as my hands landed on the bed, from his chest. Still my eyes remained shut. My lips sealed.

Something was pulling my tellytubbies pant down. I didn’t move. Coward. Where is daddy? Why is someone pulling my favourite pant down?

I still remember my screams. The neighbours, those active church goers must have heard. I was probably louder than their church microphone, hence unimportant. Each time I lie down, I play them over and over in my head. They were music to my ears. I still remember shutting my eyes. I didn’t want to see the perpetrator. Where was daddy? Why did he let someone hurt me. I felt invaded, Opened to judgement, Filthy. Still one question kept playing in my mind. Where was daddy?

I hated them, but I loved them just as much. Call me Slut, Ashewo if you please. I am all of that and more. I’m a body scarred. A spirit broken, a personality flawed. My conscience took the next train that night to hell. Leaving me with my children. Little darklings I call them.

They’re the opposite of what I am. The addictions I cling to for support. They are Me and I am them.

And today, I put a dagger in their backs.

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